Thankful for lazy Sunday afternoons after a six day work week, filled with busy clinic shifts, the start of my preceptor experience, studying for my ACLS and NRP recertification, and this morning running a 15k with a chocolate reward at the end. Now working on some holiday knitting, prepping some of this week’s posts, and enjoying some upsets in pro football. Hope you and yours are resting up and feeling ready for whatever is coming next!
The Sex Crylebration – Krista and Lola at Rookie Mag
“…Close your eyes and imagine the most embarrassing thing that could happen to you during sex. OK, now come back here. What did you think about? Does it involve blood? Barf? Farting? Pain? …Pee? Someone seeing you naked and in a weird position for the first time and just baaaaacking away slooooowly and then grabbing their clothes and running out the door? OK. Get a good, horrible picture in your mind of what would be a worst-case scenario for you. Now take a deep breath, grab a cup of mint tea, and sit down right here **pats comfy couch** with us, and let us tell you a story.
It goes like this: Once upon a time, two people rubbed their gentials together, and nothing embarrassing happened. No one queefed or farted. Candles literally lit themselves all over the bedroom. No one’s parents were home and everything smelled like roses and everyone felt sexy and didn’t go past their limits, and when it was over, the sheets were still white as a snowy dove’s wing and everyone high-fived and it was the best and that was what happened the end.
HAHAHA NOPE! The above scenario has probably happened like five times in the history of sex. Sex CAN be perfect and not make messes and not be interrupted by weird-seeming things, but—especially when you’re first starting out—that’s unlikely to happen very often. Sex is a vulnerable and kind of strange thing: We get naked with one another and see each other at odd angles and…fluids happen, making it almost unavoidable that something we weren’t necessarily prepared for right at that second will occur at some point during the proceedings. But take heart! While no sexual encounter is likely to be perfect, it’s equally unlikely that all of your WORST SEXUAL FEARS will come true. Some will, though, and here’s what you need to know about those: They will not be nearly as bad as you imagined.
You know what we’re talking about: all those nightmare scenarios that have been playing themselves out in your head ever since you heard about sex. A lot of them were formed by rumors passed around in overheard whispers: “She says she made this horrible noise down there and it was super loud” or “She was giving him a blow job and she tried to swallow and she threw up on his dick.” WAIT, WHAT?! We can totally hear your imagination going into overdrive from here. WHAT IF THAT SORT OF THING HAPPENS TO YOUUUUU???!?!??! Sex is new and freaky enough as it is without having to deal with the idea of weird noises and barfing in the presence of your partner. Vomiting while in a state of undress with someone you like? You’re getting pre-motional just thinking about it…”
The Women Of The Supreme Court Now Have the Badass Portrait They Deserve – Mollie Reilly at The Huffington Post
“…The women of the Supreme Court are the subjects of a new painting unveiled at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. on Monday.
The portrait features the high court’s current female justices, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan, as well as Sandra Day O’Connor, whoretired from the bench in 2005. O’Connor made history in 1981 when she became the first woman ever named to the Supreme Court…”
8 Things Every Woman Should’ve Learned aBout Her Period (But Never Did) – Catherine Pearson at The Huffington Post
“…First thing’s first: there is no one typical cycle — cycles can range from 21 to 35 days, said Rosser. Teen girls’ cycles can last anywhere from 21 to 45 days. And “most women do not get their period on the exact same day of the month,” Rosser added. “That is normal!” Think about it — most months have 30 or 31 days in them, so even if your cycle is 100-percent precise, your period won’t start on exactly the same day or date every month.
In addition, it is not necessarily uncommon to have one or two abnormal periods per year, Rosser said, adding that irregular or missed periods can come from a variety of causes, including illness, stress, significant weight loss or gain, or pregnancy. If you’re feeling totally fine otherwise, but your period is irregular, it’s typically OK to just wait until your next period, she said. But if that irregularity becomes persistent, or if you have any concerns, you should see your health care provider…”
“…It’s a difficult question, and one which many of us might never have considered, or may even wish to avoid. Lots of us have had traumatic birth experiences, and trauma is deepest when we feel out of control, or even violated. It can be tempting to try to forget. But the time has come to be brave and face this issue, if not for our own sake, for the sake of all those women who have not yet had their babies.
The recent survey on UK maternity care, by charity Birthrights in collaboration with Mumsnet, has unearthed some shocking statistics on consent. The results, presented at last week’s Dignity in ChildbirthForum at the Royal College of Physicians in London, revealed that not only are half of women not getting the birth they want, but that, worse still, 12% of women feel they did not agree to birth interventions, rising to an alarming 24% in the case of instrumental deliveries.
That’s just under a quarter of women who had their babies delivered by forceps or ventouse, and feel they did not consent.
This is deeply wrong, and against the law. Elizabeth Prochaska, human rights lawyer and founder of Birthrights, explains, “Obtaining a person’s consent to medical examinations and procedures is a legal requirement. Where a woman is conscious and has mental capacity, there is no justification for failing to obtain her consent.”…”
There Is Still Misogyny in Progressive Movements – Mychal Denzel Smith at The Nation
“…We can look at the current embrace and subsequent rejection of comedian Russell Brand as revolutionary savior for another example, or take a quick scan of Twitter to watch the interactions between progressive men and women of all colors to see how sexism is either found acceptable or ignored when men’s politics are otherwise laudable. But that shouldn’t be the model we follow. We should constantly challenge the sexism and misogyny of our peers (and ourselves) if we are truly committed to progressive change. We shouldn’t allow it to get to the point where we’re reacting to assault and then patting ourselves on the back because we would never do that. Revolution requires more work.
“I learned a lesson,” Cooper writes, “everybody wants to have an ally, but no one wants to stand up for anybody.” We especially don’t want to stand up when it means our own power and privilege, no matter how little we are afforded, may be stripped away from us. Men who talk a good game about revolution but continue to be invested in the perceived gains of patriarchy, sexism and misogyny not only do a disservice to the movements they part of but also, more importantly, the people for whom they claim to be fighting…”
HPV Vaccines May Be Less Effective for Black Women: Study – Kathleen Doheny at HealthDay
“…Experts have long believed that most cervical cancers are caused by persistent infection with subtypes of the sexually transmitted virus known as HPV 16 and HPV 18. These are the strains targeted by Gardasil and Cervarix. (Gardasil also targets HPV 6 and HPV 11.)
But black women tend to develop cancer of the cervix — the lower part of the uterus or womb — and die from it more often than white women, even when screening programs are similar, according to background information included in the study. This led the researchers to wonder if blacks might be less likely to benefit from vaccination.
“HPV 16 and 18 occur less frequently in African-Americans than in whites,” said study researcher Cathrine Hoyo, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Duke University School of Medicine.
Hoyo’s team looked at women who had abnormal results on Pap tests — screenings to detect precancerous cervical abnormalities.
Of the nearly 600 women with Pap smear abnormalities in the study, about 86 percent had detectable HPV, Hoyo said.
“African-Americans had half the HPV 16 and 18 frequency as whites did,” said Hoyo, who is scheduled to present the findings Monday at a conference of the American Association for Cancer Research in National Harbor, Md.
The findings, if replicated in larger studies, could call into question the effectiveness of the current vaccines for all races, she said…”
Midwives and nurses are as good as docs – and sometimes better, WHO finds – Maggie Fox at NBC News
“…Cometto and colleagues around the world looked at all the studies they could find on the quality of care delivered by non-physicians. They settled on 53 that looked specifically at the quality of care delivered — and at how happy patients were with the care they got.
“The evidence shows there aren’t statistically significant differences,” Cometto said. “The quality of care they provide is comparable to physicians. In some cases, for specific services, they actually outperform physicians.”
For instance, nurse-midwives or midwives who deliver babies end up using fewer drugs and they are less likely than doctors to make a type of cut called an episiotomy. Groups such as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend against episiotomies because they don’t heal as well as the natural tears that occur during childbirth.
Midwives were no more or less likely than doctors to induce labor, perform cesarean sections or use instruments to deliver a baby, Cometto’s team found, and the rates of death of either mother or child were the same among doctors as among midwives.
There were similar findings for treating patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS. “One study compared the effects of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in patients managed by nurses and those managed by doctors. There was no significant difference in the likelihood of ART failure between groups of patients managed by nurses and those managed by doctors,” the researchers wrote. “Nor was there any difference in mortality, failure of viral suppression or immune recovery between the groups.”
When it came to caring for heart disease and diabetes, patients actually seemed to like nurses and other non-doctors better, the report found. This jibes with what nurse-practitioners and physician assistants working in the United States report. “We look at patients in a more holistic manner,” Judy Honig, associate dean at the Columbia University School of Nursing, said in a recent interview…”
MAP: 9 States Besides Texas That Are Making It Harder for Women to Vote – Dana Liebelson at Mother Jones
“…Women have been allowed to vote in the United States since 1920, after the passage of the 19th Amendment. But fast-forward to 2013, and plenty of states’ laws have a provision that makes it harder for women who are married or divorced to cast a ballot.
When Americans all over the country head to the polls on November 5 to vote on mayoral candidates, ballot initiatives, gubernatorial races, and even members of Congress, they will be up against a new kind of voter ID law that has mostly cropped up in 2012 and 2013 and disproportionately affects women—as well as transgender voters and anyone else with a name change.
Controversial voter ID laws, which GOP proponents say are intended to prevent the (pretty much nonexistent) crime of voting fraud, are nothing new, and they have been criticized for targeting low-income voters, young people, and minorities. But Texas’s newly enforced voter ID law has put a spotlight on another group of voters that will be disproportionately affected by these rules. Not only must Texas voters present government-issue photo IDs to vote, but now poll workers are required under the law to check these IDs against an official voting registry to determine if the two names “substantially” match. That means that a woman who updated her voter registration when she got married, but not her driver’s license or passport (and vice versa), could face additional hurdles in getting her ballot counted.
The Texas law may have drawn extra scrutiny because of the state’s reputation for being a battleground in the “war on women”—but it’s just one of many to adopt this type of provision. At least 9 other states’ voting laws, most enacted in 2012 or 2013, use similar language. That doesn’t count the 24 additional states with other kinds of voter ID laws, including some with looser photo ID rules that are still potentially problematic for women. In 2006, the Brennan Center found that 34 percent of voting-age women do not possess a proof-of-citizenship document that reflects their legal name, although updated statistics on photo IDs are hard to come by. And Slate points out that the law doesn’t just affect Democrats, as Republican women are more likely change their names…”
UN Women ad series reveals widespread sexism – UN Women
“…A series of ads, developed as a creative idea for UN Women by Memac Ogilvy & Mather Dubai, uses genuine Google searches to reveal the widespread prevalence of sexism and discrimination against women. Based on searches dated 9 March, 2013 the ads expose negative sentiments ranging from stereotyping as well as outright denial of women’s rights.
“When we came across these searches, we were shocked by how negative they were and decided we had to do something with them,” says Christopher Hunt, Art Director of the creative team. The idea developed places the text of the Google searches over the mouths of women portraits, as if to silence their voices.
“The ads are shocking because they show just how far we still have to go to achieve gender equality. They are a wake up call, and we hope that the message will travel far,” adds Kareem Shuhaibar, copy writer.
For UN Women, the searches confirm the urgent need to continue making the case for women’s rights, empowerment and equality, a cause the organization is pursuing around the world. UN Women is heartened by the initial strong reaction to the ads and hopes they will spark constructive dialogue globally.
Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag: #womenshould…”
How Does Obamacare Impact Women of Color and People in Prison? – Victoria Law at Bitch Magazine
“…According to a new report by the Center for American Progress (PDF), women of color account for more than half of uninsured women in the United States. Mercedes, who is African-American, is part of the one in four African-American women who are uninsured. One in four Asian-American women are also uninsured and more than one-in-three Latinas also lack health care coverage.
How will the Affordable Care Act (ACA) change this? The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services predicts that more than 8.5 million women of color will gain the ability to access affordable or subsidized health care through the Health Insurance Marketplace, including 4.6 million Latinas, three million African-Americans, and 970,000 Asian-Americans.
The recent Center for American Progress report also discusses the disproportionate poverty and incarceration of women of color. African-American women are three times more likely to be incarcerated than white women and Latinas are 69 percent more likely. (The report does not discuss rates of incarceration for Asian-American women.) While the report examines the disproportionate lack of health care coverage among women of color as well as their disproportionate rate of incarceration, it does not address the intersection of these two problems and the implications the new healthcare law may have for those who are caught in that intersection…”
Dr. Willie Parker from Mississippi’s Last Abortion Clinic Discusses Link Between Abortion and Poverty – Sunsara Taylor at On The Issues Magazine
“…The reality is that all women who are of reproductive age and are sexually active are essentially at risk for unplanned pregnancy, given that 50% of all pregnancies that occur in this country are unplanned. Unplanned doesn’t mean unwanted, but we know that fully half of the women that have an unplanned pregnancy will consider abortion. Even though unplanned pregnancy happens to all women, those who are disproportionately at risk are women of color and women in poverty. These are also the women that have limited access to reliable contraception, because most contraception is available through insurance and these women are disproportionately represented in the ranks of the uninsured . These are also the women who are not represented politically in ways that would allow them to demand access to services like sex education, contraception, and abortion.
What I see where I provide abortion care are areas that are very hard hit by poverty are also areas that have high proportions of populations of color. 20% of all Mississippians live in poverty, but 42% of African Americans in the state of Mississippi live in poverty. Again, there is that link between poverty unintended pregnancy and abortion. Unintended pregnancies are where abortions come from, they don’t come from people having particular religious beliefs or lack of belief. They don’t come from the location of the clinic, as is alleged, that agencies build clinics in communities of color to make it easier for them to have abortions. They come from unplanned and unwanted, or planned but lethally flawed, pregnancies. So those are the patients that I see. They are largely women of color and poor women, because women who have means often have other ways to access abortion care, in a confidential and private way…”
From the Facebook Page of Women’s Right News